Facebook Messenger will soon let you delete sent messages

Ever sent something you wished you hadn’t on Facebook Messenger? Whether it’s an embarrassing message or an even more embarrassing photo, you’ll soon have up to 10 minutes in which to erase it from the internet forever.

While it’s true that you can already delete messages from Messenger, they only disappear from your own device and not from those who receive it.

The update that will allow you to remove a message from your Messenger chats is “coming soon,” Facebook said this week.

Confirmation of the upcoming feature is contained in the release notes accompanying the latest update for Facebook’s stand-alone messaging app. The final paragraph reads: “Coming soon: Remove a message from a chat thread after it’s been sent. If you accidentally send the wrong photo, incorrect information or message the wrong thread, you can easily correct it by removing the message within ten minutes of sending it.”

Facebook’s other messaging app, WhatsApp, gives you a whole hour to decide if you want to take back a message, so it’s a little surprising that you’ll only have 10 minutes to make a decision with Messenger. Interestingly, when WhatsApp rolled out the feature in 2017, you had a mere 7 minutes to delete it, but the company extended the timeframe to an hour earlier this year.

The feature has actually been available on the Messenger platform for some time, but only for Facebook’s top dogs. The fact came to light in April when Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg was found to be using it. The company never made it public that it was able to remove sent messages, nor did it inform recipients when it did so, leaving the company open to accusations of breaching user trust. A short while later, Facebook announced plans to launch the functionality for all users of the messaging app.

But take note. The feature does not delay the sending of the message by 10 minutes (which would make for some awkward exchanges in real-time chats), so the recipient has that amount of time to read it, and, if they like, save its contents — in other words, any potential damage could still be done.

On WhatsApp, retracted messages are replaced with a note that says “This message was deleted,” though it’s not yet clear if this will happen in Messenger chats as well.

Facebook recently unveiled a new look for Messenger that also comes with a bunch of new features for the messaging app.

Social Media

Time alerts put the brakes on Facebook consumption, are rolling out now

Just how much time do you spend scrolling through the Facebook feed? Facebook will now tell you. The new features also include daily alerts that tell users when they've spent too much time on the social network.
Social Media

Addicted to Instagram? Its new ‘activity dashboard’ is here to help

Ever get that nagging feeling you're spending too much time on Instagram? Well, a new "activity dashboard" has a bunch of features designed to help you better control how you use the addictive photo-sharing app.
Social Media

Going incognito: Here's how to appear offline on Facebook

How do you make sure your friends and family can't see if you're on Facebook, even if you are? Here, we'll show you how to turn off your active status on three different platforms, so you can browse Facebook without anyone knowing.
Social Media

Facebook is rolling out a Messenger ‘unsend’ feature, and here’s how to use it

Facebook is starting to roll out a "remove message" feature for its Messenger app. It lets you delete a message in a thread within 10 minutes of sending it, and replaces it with a note telling recipients that it's been removed.
Social Media

Vine fans, your favorite video-looping app is coming back as Byte

Vine fans were left disappointed in 2017 when its owner, Twitter, pulled the plug on the video-looping app. But now one of its co-founders has promised that a new version of the app, called Byte, is coming soon.
News

Social media use increases depression and anxiety, experiment shows

A study has shown for the first time a causal link between social media use and lower rates of well-being. Students who limited their social media usage to 30 minutes a day showed significant decreases in anxiety and fear of missing out.
Product Review

It's not a spy, but you still won't want to friend Facebook's Portal+

Facebook has jumped into the smart home game with the Portal+, a video-calling device featuring an Amazon Alexa speaker and a screen. While it has lots of cool calling features, we’re weary of Facebook taking up counter space in our home.
Social Media

Twitter boss hints that an edit button for tweets may finally be on its way

Twitter has been talking for years about launching an edit button for tweets, but it still hasn't landed. This week, company boss Jack Dorsey addressed the matter again, describing a quick-edit button as "achievable."
Social Media

‘Superwoman’ YouTuber Lilly Singh taking a break for her mental health

Claiming to be "mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually exhausted," popular YouTuber Lilly Singh has told her millions of fans she's taking a break from making videos in order to recuperate.
Social Media

Build a wish list and shop videos with Instagram’s latest shopping update

Eyeing a product on Instagram? Now there are more ways to shop from the social network. Instagram just rolled out options to save products in a collection as users can also now shop from videos.
Social Media

Why an American named John Lewis gets lots of Twitter hassle from Brits

Spare a thought for Twitter user John Lewis. When he signed up as @johnlewis soon after the app launched in 2006, little did he know what he was letting himself in for. Clue: There's a U.K. department store called John Lewis.
Social Media

Instagram purges fake followers, likes, and comments generated from other apps

Instagram looking a little more authentic? You can thank machine learning. A new tool is helping Instagram spot followers, likes and comments generated from third-party apps -- and this is just the start.
Photography

Dual cameras for Spectacles 3? Report suggests Snap-designed glasses with AR

Despite underselling the first generation, Snap Inc. isn't done with camera glasses yet. According to a recent report, the company is rumored to be working on another Snap Spectacles with dual cameras for augmented reality features.
Social Media

Facebook removes one-click comment test after users call the tool ‘dystopian’

A faster way to comment on posts sounds innocent enough, but when a Facebook test of the feature appeared on a story about a shooting, users weren't happy. The tool attempted to suggest one-click comments.